The Ultimate Newborn Photography Session Guide is full of the top tips to help you prepare for your in home newborn photo session. This guide is packed with resources and information so you can feel confident and relaxed before welcoming your photographer in your home.
From what to wear, to preparing baby for photos, to preparing your home, this newborn photography session guide has it all. Spend time on each section and please don’t hesitate to contact me with your questions. As a Seattle area photographer, I have been capturing newborns and families for over a decade. I want you to feel relaxed and prepared so you can focus on loving that sweet new baby during your photo session!
Grab a cup of coffee and let’s dive into the newborn photography session guide!
Begin by planning what to wear for your newborn photography session.
When you’re deep in your nesting phase, it’s the time to book your photographer and then start planning what to wear.
I encourage families to plan outfits before baby arrives. Once baby is here it is not as easy to head to the store, nor will you want to wait for something to arrive in the mail. (Amazon Prime has spoiled us all, hasn’t it?!).
But what do you wear for photos in your home shortly after giving birth?
Start with something comfortable for newborn photos.
You will be snuggling up together, holding baby, stopping for nursing breaks. The last thing you want is something stiff, uncomfortable and unforgiving during your newborn photography session.
Next, consider the colors in your home. Neutrals typically photograph beautifully for newborn photos. However, this newborn photography session guide is not about stifling your family’s style. If you love color, embrace it.
I have photographed babies in a deep teal, mauve, green, navy blue. They have all looked gorgeous and most importantly, the family loved their photos. In the end, selecting colors that work with the decor in your home while complementing your family’s skin tones is the goal.
Of course, if baby is here already, don’t fret. You can still plan what to wear using the tips provided in this newborn photography session guide.
A few of my favorite resources for selecting what to wear for newborn photos are below.
What to Wear for Newborn Photos in Your Home
What Mom Should Wear for Newborn Photos
Dressing Dad and Siblings for Newborn Photos
How to Prepare for Newborn Photos When You Don’t Know Gender
Now that we’ve settled on what to wear, next up in the newborn photography session guide is when to schedule your session.
You will schedule your newborn session once baby is here.
While yes, you want to book your session before baby arrives to hold your spot on my calendar. However, we will merely put your due date as a place holder.
Once baby is here you’ll reach out to set a date. We wait until baby is here for several reasons. First, baby will come when baby comes. Since we don’t have a crystal ball to know exactly when they will arrive (wouldn’t that be nice if we did?!), we will wait to schedule. This way we avoid having to reschedule or having you worry about your session date beforehand. Second, your delivery will determine a lot of when your session will be.
Typically newborn photography sessions take place around 5-14 days of age. However, if delivery was more challenging and you need more time to recover. That is okay. If you need more time to settle into nursing and life with a newborn, that is okay.
Often families who have booked a Seattle area baby photography session, will contact me while they are still in the hospital as they have a good idea about how mom and baby are doing.
For a more in depth look at this topic head to When Should You Take Newborn Photos.
Next in the newborn photography session guide is who can be included in your baby’s session.
The focus of newborn photo sessions are your baby. However, your family is just as important. A newborn session includes all immediate family.
This means, mom, dad, baby, and siblings are all captured in the newborn photograph session. Your pets are welcome to join in too. I have had cats and dogs snuggle in with their family and the new baby during the photo session. That’s the beauty of photos in your home. Fur babies are welcome.
For questions about including pets, head to the article on Can I Include My Dog.
Pet’s are not the only ones welcome to join in though.
The birth of a newborn baby often means grandparents come to visit. They are more than welcome to step in for a couple of photos too. These photos of your parents with your new baby will be treasured by all.
The newborn photography session guide would not be complete if we did not talk about how to prepare for your session. First up, your home.
Preparing your house for a newborn photography session is easier than you think.
Lifestyle newborn photo sessions take place within the comfort of your home. For some that may feel like a relief because you don’t have to pack up everyone and everything for photos. (More on Why You’ll Love Newborn Photos In Your Home).
For others, the thought of having someone coming to take photos in your home may feel a little overwhelming.
Either way, you can relax. I did not put together this newborn photography session guide to cause you more stress! It’s supposed to do the opposite.
To prepare your home, you really do not have to do anything. I have 6 kids, which means I have had 6 newborns. I know the pile of diapers, the multiple changing stations and water bottles all around the house. When I come to your home, I will look for the space with the best natural light. This is typically the living room, master bedroom, and/or nursery. Guest Bedrooms may, as well.
Regardless, the space we need I will move anything that would be in the frame to the side. That’s it.
If you’re feeling like you must do something. Pick your darkest room and shove the piles there. But I promise, I expect things to not be spotless.
Next in this newborn guide is how do you prepare baby for the photography session?
Preparing your baby for a lifestyle newborn photography session may sound like a big ordeal. Once again, this is to be a laid back experience. Not one full of stress.
Often, other photographers newborn photography session guide will say to keep baby awake as long as possible before photos. They may also say to give baby an extra feeding just before your session time.
However, you do not need to mess with your baby’s feeding or sleeping schedule. Sessions take place around 10am, largely due to that being the best time for natural light in Seattle area homes. If your baby needs to feed shortly after we begin, that is okay. Your baby can also be awake or asleep. Most likely, baby will do both during the session.
So what do you need to do? The morning of our session, I suggest gently wiping down baby’s face and body to remove any flakes, etc. This is best done a a little before our session to allow time for baby to settle down if baths/wipe downs are not their thing. The goal isn’t perfectly clear skin, but to remove any debris that comes with those early newborn days.
The next thing you can do is dress baby in a well fitting onesie or gown with a fresh diaper. For more ideas and tips for dressing baby check out What Should Baby Wear for Photos.
With the baby figured out, it’s time to think about siblings.
The best thing you can do for preparing your children for a newborn photo session is talk to them about it. This newborn photography session guide tip is about helping your kids feel apart of the process.
Tell your kids that you’re going to have a fun morning snuggling together, playing, and loving on baby while someone takes pictures. You can explain how you have special photo outfits for cuddling. Make it all about the fun, not about performing. You can even head to my About page to show them a photo of their photographer to help them feel more comfortable.
Make the most of your session by trusting your photographer.
You selected a photographer because you felt connected and you loved their work. Trust in your photographer as the expert. When families relax and let me worry about busy toddlers and focus on loving on their babies, sessions go beautifully.
If you still have questions after reading through this newborn photography session guide, reach out to your photographer.
As you prepare for your newborn photography session, I am here to guide you. Should you have questions, please do not hesitate. I want you to feel as confident and comfortable as possible.
If you can’t get enough content to help you prepare for your session, read through the newborn photography section of my blog.
Make sure you’ve booked your Seattle area newborn photography session by contacting me.
Not yet expecting, or not quite ready to book a session? Visit my newborn portfolio to get a feel for my work as a Seattle newborn photographer.